St. Mary's riding seven-game winning streak for first time since 2006

Seahawks, who haven't lost since March 13, gaining confidence from run

April 11, 2013|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

Things did not look appealing for St. Mary’s when the team opened March with three losses in four contests to fall to 2-4. Since then, however, the program has strung together seven consecutive wins – a run it hasn’t enjoyed since 2006.

The Seahawks are 9-4 overall and 4-0 in the Capital Athletic Conference, but coach Chris Hasbrouck did his best to downplay any fervor as they prepare for No. 6 Salisbury (12-3, 5-0) this Saturday and York (11-3, 3-1) next Saturday.

“We’ve just been plugging away,” he said Thursday morning. “It’s been one game at a time, and it’s been a lot of quality opponents  that we’ve gone against, and we’ve done just enough to win. We’re playing with a lot of effort right now, but I don’t think we’ve played our best lacrosse yet, which is good. I think we’re getting better each game. The guys are feeling good, they’re working hard. So it’s great to be on that side of it, but we’ve obviously got two huge regular-season games to go.”

St. Mary’s has outscored its opponents, 79-45, during the seven-game winning streak, but not much else has appeared to change. The offense is shooting 28.9 percent (79-of 273), which is the same percentage (55-of-190) the unit had in its first six contests. And the 57.4 success rate on faceoffs (85-of-148) is just slightly more than the 57.0 percent (81-of-142) the team enjoyed in the first six games.

“I don’t think we’ve been playing that much differently since [losing to] Washington College [on March 5] or Denison [on March 13] for that matter,” Hasbrouck said. “We just got off to such a slow start against Denison. But the combinations are working right now, and we’ve finally settled on the lineup and we’ve gotten some guys back from injury, which is great. Things are coming together for us, and it’s an exciting season. We knew we’d have the potential to win some games. So it’s nice to have the hard work pay off.”

Raw statistics aside, Hasbrouck said he has noticed that the winning streak has helped inject the team with a greater level of confidence. He thinks that morale stems from the Seahawks winning one-goal decisions against Ohio Wesleyan on March 17, Frostburg State on March 30 and Mary Washington on Wednesday night.

 “You have to learn how to win,” Hasbrouck said. “Especially in the upper half of the division, winning is hard. Our schedule is extremely demanding, and we’re learning how to win. Yesterday was a good example of that. I think Mary Washington is a very good team, and I feel like it’s one of the more difficult places that we go to. We jumped out to a good lead and not that we stopped playing because I thought our effort was great, but Mary Washington just came back and they were playing with a lot of passion and intensity. For us to win in overtime, as a group, that’s learning how to win. Hopefully, that’s going to continue to help us down the road. I do think we’re playing with confidence. I do think that if we are playing at our best, we can beat anybody on our schedule.”

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